Re: Electronic Passing

Subject: Re: Electronic Passing
From: "Dennis Hays/The Burden Lake Group, Ltd." <dlhays -at- IX -dot- NETCOM -dot- COM>
Date: Sat, 24 Aug 1996 14:52:52 -0400

Some snips:
>> I wonder if anyone can tell me if there is an industry standard
>> about whether or not to allow SMEs access to the electronic copies
>> of in-progress documents?

>So how do you track revisions for leaving a "trail" and how do you
>manage the problems of revised files.

I usually start early in the process by finding "how important" are the docs to the finished product. If I can get the powers to buy off on importance, then the next step is to stress the value of document control. Letting everyone have a shot at the electronic version reduces the value and lowers the integrity of the doc. Therefore, since I'm a TWer, I "volunteer" to manage the version control in the following manner:

If the SMEs will work with hard copy, I pass them the paper and incorporate their suggestions and changes (keeping their hand scrawled copies as evidence... er, support. I also use change bars up until the final print.

If the SMEs will work only with electronic versions of the dos, then I give them a copy and tell then to use change bars. I'll only consider their offerings with the change bars--I don't have the time to compare theirs and mine word-for-word. I also keep a copy of their electronic version, both as a computer file _and_ as a hard copy.

It's my contention, if you release control of the version process, you'll lose control of the entire doc and the final version may be worthless. I'm not a control freak (unless I have to be), but I cannot be responsible for the doc without being accountable for the control of what I write. If my boss were to demand he/she be allowed to make changes in my only version, then I note that on my last "saved" copy and save it in my directory under a version name I make up. I, at least, have a previous version when the day is done.

Dennis Hays\The Burden Lake Group,
Voice: 518/477-6388 Fax: 518/477-5006
eMail: dlhays -at- earthlink -dot- net
-->eMail address changes to above<--

"God doesn't want you to be certain.
That's why He gave you a brain."

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